Pacnet today announced a significant expansion of its data center footprint with a brand new facility in Singapore. Back in October, Pacnet and its new CEO Carl Grivner detailed a new plan to drive the company forward in which managed services and data centers would play a big role. Given that this buildout will cost $90M, clearly they are putting some money behind those words.
The new Tier III standalone facility will be located in the Paya Lebar area, featuring 157,000 square feet spread across eight floors. When it goes online in the fourth quarter of 2013, it will be capable of supporting 1,500 high power density racks with an initial IT load of 6Mw. It will be carrier neutral, and of course will be directly connected to Pacnet’s submarine cable systems.
This is the second big data center project they’ve announced lately. Back in December they announced a project in Tianjin’s Wuqing district in partnership with the local government that has a $72M price tag and will support some 2,000 racks. The company’s current footprint of 300,000 square feet is clearly going to go up rapidly in a few quarters. The Tianjin project improves their position in China at the northern end of their footpring, while the Singapore project will anchor their infrastructure to the south.
The move deeper into the data center business is probably a good idea, as the intra-APAC bandwidth market is going to be highly competitive for the forseeable future any way you shake it. Far better to see that business as an enabler to what has been a much better growth market for a while. Two such buildouts is probably enough for the moment, I’d guess we’ll now be hearing more about the rollout of various managed cloud services and enhancements that will leverage the extra space as it comes online.
The funding for all this must be coming from somewhere, I wonder if their private equity owners simply decided to double down. Just last Spring the company was for sale, with Indonesia’s PT Telkom kicking the tires. One might have expected them to find a conservative way forward that didn’t involve lots of capex. But on the other hand, capex spent on colo space is rather more conservative these days than most alternatives given the apparently insatiable global demand that is being driven by the cloud revolution.